The reason we looked at electric vehicles was because one of our employees who gets their fuel paid moved from within 3 miles of Kinspeed to 38 miles from the office. His vehicle does 28 to the gallon of diesel. At £1.40 per litre this would cost the company another £15.77 per day or £4000 per annum. Vauxhall claim the Ampera will return 235 miles to the gallon. This would cut the fuel costs to around £500 saving £3500 per annum.
Our intrepid employee took a test drive and found the car very impressive. Obviously it was quiet but it was also very nippy. The only thing that he could find not to his liking was the fact that there were only 4 seats and he has two kids already.
The most interesting thing we did find out was that unlike some other electric vehicles the Ampera does not stop after 50 miles when it runs out of juice, neither does a hybrid engine kick in. The petrol engine in there actually charges the battery rather than runs the car.
We have to now weigh up the cost savings over the higher initial costs. The model we want is £32,000 even after the government initiative of £5000. We would normally buy a £25,000 vehicle but we do run them over 5 years. We also have no indication if it will keep any of its value as it is such a new car, however I think after 5 years most cars are pretty worthless despite dealer claims. Based on keeping the car for 5 years and saving £3500 per annum on fuel plus another £1000 over 5 years on road tax the answer I think is that electric car here we come.